How many times have we seen this game over the last week or so?
The Cubs take a first-inning lead, then cough it all up and lose and, in fact, don’t score at all in the late innings (again today, no runs after the fifth). That might not have mattered, as the Reds scored seemingly at will all day and took the series finale in Cincinnati 20-5.
This one started out well. Christopher Morel led off with a single and one out later, Ian Happ walked. After Seiya Suzuki flied out, Frank Schwindel drove in a pair [VIDEO].
It got to 3-0 in the second when Nico Hoerner homered [VIDEO].
Justin Steele, who had been so good in his last two starts against the D-backs, didn’t have it today. Kyle Farmer smacked a two-run homer in the bottom of the second to make it 3-2. It could have been worse in that inning except for this great play by Ian Happ [VIDEO].
Happ has become a plus defender in left field and that’s great to see.
What wasn’t great to see was Seiya Suzuki injured in the top of the third. Here’s what happened [VIDEO].
On a stolen base attempt, Reds shortstop Kyle Farmer appeared to accidentally fall on Suzuki’s left hand. Suzuki stayed in the game for the bottom of the third, but after the Reds’ monstrous third inning (I’ll get to that) he left the game:
Seiya Suzuki exited today's game with a left ring finger sprain. #Cubs— Meghan Montemurro (@M_Montemurro) May 26, 2022
Hopefully it’s nothing major and the off day will be enough rest.
Oh, yes, that Reds third inning. Well, you probably don’t want to hear about the carnage in detail, but it involved three walks (one intentional), four singles, a double, a triple and a sacrifice fly, probably the worst inning of Scott Effross’ career... had enough?
It was 10-3 heading to the fifth, and the Cubs attempted a bit of a comeback. A pair of solo homers brought brief hope.
That ball landed in the second deck:
A five-run deficit on a day like this? Maaaaybe. Farmer hit his second homer of the day off Brandon Hughes to make it 11-5 after five, and just before the sixth inning was about to start, an hour’s rain delay followed. (And Hughes’ one run allowed in two innings was the best Cubs pitching performance of the day.)
Two more Reds runs scored off Chris Martin in the sixth to make it 13-5 and they added another pair in the seventh to make it a 10-run game.
David Ross got himself tossed for the second day in a row in the top of the seventh and this appears to be the reason:
Correction: Ross did get ejected. Just much more subtly. https://t.co/2jywWAnRNx— Maddie Lee (@maddie_m_lee) May 26, 2022
Then Rowan Wick and Joey Votto had some words at the end of the inning and this appears to be a very polite Canadian disagreement. Here’s video of that little kerfuffle [VIDEO].
One last thing: I was kind of surprised Contreras didn’t get removed until the eighth inning once the game was out of hand. Why not rest that tender hamstring after the rain delay?
Andrelton Simmons wrapped things up for the Cubs by pitching that eighth inning, so that was fun. Fun for the Reds, anyway, as they piled on five more runs off some of his 43 mile per hour offerings.
The Cubs have a rare Friday off day. Then they’ll play the other half of this year’s Crosstown Series Saturday night and Sunday afternoon on the South Side against the White Sox. At this writing the Cubs don’t have a starter listed for Saturday’s game, though if they stay on rotation, it’ll be Wade Miley. Our old NL Central pal Johnny Cueto will start for the White Sox. Game time Saturday is 6:15 p.m. CT and TV coverage will be on Fox-TV, their first Saturday “Baseball Night in America.” Here is the coverage map for Saturday’s game. A reminder that if you subscribe to MLB.TV or MLB Extra Innings, you can watch Saturday’s game even if it’s not on the Fox station in your market.